Brazilian Digital Library Of The Ses And Dissertations Online

Africa

Adolescent Reproductive Health Network (ARHNe): Health System and Health Promotion Research in Eastern and Southern Africa
The program targets adolescent reproductive health and risk behaviors. Includes list of theses and dissertations from Makerere University, some South African universities and other universities. Funded by the European Commission, administered by the Univ. of Oslo. http://www.nutrition.uio.no/ARHNe/ [KF] http://www.nutrition.uio.no/ARHNe/

CODESRIA. List of Theses Sponsored by CODESRIA
(Listed by subject, from 1998 to 2002). Lists, by subjects, of theses funded by CODESRIA, Council for the Development of Social Science Research in Africa / Conseil pour le Developpement de la Recherche en Sciences Sociales en Afrique (Dakar). Provides author, title, degree, date, pagination, granting institution. [KF] http://www.codesria.org/Links/Training_and_Grants/list_of_theses.htm

Database of African Theses and Dissertations
"The DATAD database contains citations and abstracts for theses and dissertations completed in African universities. The launching database includes works from all subject areas in ten leading universities and include abstracts written by the authors." Register to see selected brief citations. Full access requires a subscription. Participating universities are from Cameroun, Egypt, Ethiopia, Ghana, Kenya, Mozambique, Senegal, Tanzania, Uganda, Zimbabwe. On the web site of the Association of African Universities based in Accra, Ghana. [KF] http://www.aau.org/page/database-african-theses-and-dissertations-datad

Database of African Theses and Dissertations: Report of a Feasibility Study
No longer on the web.  See an 8 page report in PDF by Mary Materu-Behitsa. "A feasibility study (Feb. 1999) for a pilot project to index and abstract theses and dissertations completed at African universities." Part of the Project for Information Access and Connectivity (PIAC) funded bythe Ford Foundation and the Rockefeller Foundation. Its director was Lisbeth Levey. [KF] http://www.codesria.org/IMG/pdf/Mary_Materu_Behitsa.pdf  Features include:

  • theses and dissertations completed at each university—by faculty and discipline
  • information on how theses are handled at each university surveyed
  • copyright practices for theses at surveyed universities
  • the state of internet connectivity at the universities

Ecole Inter-Etats des Sciences et Médécine Vétérinaires de Dakar (Senegal)
In French. Thèses et mémoires de l'Ecole Inter-Etats des Sciences et Médécine Vétérinaires. http://www.beep.ird.fr/cgi-bin/library.cgi?site=localhost&a=p&p=about&c=eismv2&l=en&w=utf-8

Ezema, Ifeanyi J., and C. I. Ugwu. ?Electronic Theses and Dissertations in Nigeria University Libraries: Status, Challenges and Strategies.?
Article online but requires a subscription. Some universities subscribe. Investigates "the current status of electronic theses and dissertations (ETD) projects in Nigerian university libraries." "university libraries in Nigeria stand to benefit immensely from ETD projects. Some of these benefits as revealed from the findings include enhancing scholarly communication in Nigeria, promoting the global visibility of Nigerian universities, and enhancing research dissemination." From Electronic Library, Vol. 31, no. 4 (August 2, 2013): 493?507. doi:10.1108/EL-08-2011-0118.

Histoire de l'Afrique de l'Ouest
In French. Site created by historians from West African universities. Contents include un annuaire des historiens [with current research, publications, activities), chronologies for West Africa and each of the countries covered: Burkina Faso, Togo, Niger, Mali, Sénégal, and a databases of citations to history theses (Mémoires, maîtrises, DEA et thèses) from West African universities completed from 1970 à 2004. The study, Historiographie nigérienne, bilan critique et perspectives, by Kimba IKRISSA includes a list of theses on Niger and memoires de maitrise from the Universite de Niamey, with graphs and statistics on theses production. The web site has support from the Agence universitaire de la Francophonie. [KF] http://www.histoire-afrique.org/

Kenyan Resources Database
"A project aimed at making available bibliographic information of theses and dissertations that have significant research carried out on or in Kenya." Locate theses by author, title, institution, year, and blocks of years. Those with theses or dissertations not in the database are welcome to include it. The Project Manager is S. Katuu of Vancouver, Canada. E-mail: kenyadb@yahoo.com [KF] http://kenyadb.freeservers.com/

Madagascar - Theses malgaches en ligne
"Vous trouverez sur ce portail, l'ensemble des th?ses et m?moires soutenus devant les six universit?s publiques de Madagascar et d?pos?s aupr?s des biblioth?ques universitaires depuis le 23 mai 2002, dans le cadre du projet Cyberth?ses, soit en format html ou en format pdf." http://theses.recherches.gov.mg/

Memoire Online
In French. Full text of Memoires completed at African and French universities. Some examples follow. Based in Paris, France. http://www.memoireonline.com/

Networked Digital Library of Theses and Dissertations
Find abstracts and full text theses and dissertations by language - Afrikaans, Northern Sotho, Tswana, Tsonga. Use the SCIRUS ETD Search to find titles by subject, author, title, institution. "(NDLTD) is an international organization dedicated to promoting the adoption, creation, use, dissemination and preservation of electronic analogues to the traditional paper-based theses and dissertations." Based at Blacksburg, Virginia. http://www.ndltd.org/ http://alcme.oclc.org/ndltd/index.html

OpenDOAR - Directory of Open Access Repositories [Africa]
Database of African academic online research (articles, theses, dissertations, reports). http://opendoar.nottingham.ac.uk/find.php?cID=Africa

Register of Namibian Theses
Database of theses about Namibia. Access abstracts on theses by keyword, title, language, date. Full text theses will be available. [KF] http://greenstone.unam.na/gsdl/cgi-bin/library See also the University of Namibia Library web site which has the Register of Theses and Dissertations.

ResearchKenya.org - Union List of Theses and Dissertations held by Universities and Research Institutions in Kenya
"...database contains 12,343 records of theses and dissertations undertaken in Kenya, collected together by the Kenya Information Preservation Society (KIPS)" Includes theses completed for institutions located outside of Kenya and theses written by non-Kenyan scholars. "KIPS does not hold the documents listed." Has a directory of contributing institutions. Based in Nairobi, Kenya. [KF] http://www.researchkenya.org/

UNESCO Clearinghouse of Electronic Theses and Dissertations
"A database of institutions (universities, libraries, computing centers, publishing houses, etc. with ETD [electronic theses and dissertations] projects), experts in the field of ETD, and technical and educational materials availabe on the Web to support and disseminate ETD." Includes the Particular Area Of Partnership Wanted. http://www.eduserver.de/unesco/

UNESCO Guide for Electronic Theses and Dissertations
For institutions interested in producing e-theses. "a resource for graduate students who are writing theses or dissertations, for graduate faculty who want to mentor ETD authors, for graduate deans who want to initiate ETD programs, and for IT administrators at universities." http://etdguide.org/

Universite Cheikh Anta Diop. Département d'Histoire - Virtual Library
In French. http://www.histoire-ucad.org/archives/index.php/ressources/accueil-bibliotheque-virtuelle.html
Contents include:

  • Mémoires et Thèses: Liste des mémoires et thèses numérisés.
  • Thioub Ibrahima, Le Rassemblement démocratique africain et la lutte anti-coloniale de 1946 à 1958, Mémoire de Maitrise, 1982, 85 p.

Universite Gaston Berger (Saint-Louis, Senegal)
In French. Full text theses. "Cette bibliothèque électronique recense tous les Thèses et Mémoires produits par l'Université Gaston Berger." http://www.beep.ird.fr/cgi-bin/library.cgi?site=localhost&a=p&p=about&c=ressourc&l=en&w=utf-8

Université Polytechnique de Bobo-Dioulasso (Burkina Faso)
In French. Mémoires et thèses de l'Université polytechnique de Bobo-Dioulasso. http://www.beep.ird.fr/cgi-bin/library.cgi?site=localhost&a=p&p=about&c=upb&l=en&w=utf-8

University of  Botswana. History Department. Subject Index and Checklist of History and Archaeology Dissertations and Research Essays Submitted at the University of Botswana, 1976-1998
Lists four M.A. dissertations and 222 B.A. research essays. [KF] http://ubh.tripod.com/ac/studrp.htm

University of Ibadan. African Regional Centre for Information Science, ARCIS
Regional centre for information technology training, research and advisory services. Offers M.Sci., M.Phil., and Ph.D. degrees, workshops, seminars. Includes a list of Masters degree projects and Phd Theses. Courses in record management, internet publishing, software and information systems project management, business information systems design and applications, CDS/ISIS, etc. Based in Ibadan, Nigeria. [KF] http://www.arcisng.net/

University of Nigeria, Nsukka - Virtual Library
Site under construction. Full text Theses, Dissertations, Journal Articles, and research reports by Nigerian scholars for other organizations are on-line. Listing by Subjects/Categories. Links to dissertations authored by Nigerians on outside web sites (such as U.S. dissertation sites). http://repository.unn.edu.ng/index.php/Research-Documents/

Australia

Australian Digital Theses Program
"...a national collaborative distributed database of digitised theses produced at Australian Universities....provides access to PhD and Masters by Research theses only." Databases of full text theses. Includes:
An examination of the impact of colonialism on cultural identity, by Denise Morden. http://adt.caul.edu.au/
A study to develop a strategic model for the Ethiopian tourism industry, by Teklehaimanot S. Shanka
Ideology as commodity : industry of a theocracy and production of famines in Ethiopia, by Liban Wako Adi.
The Quite Revolution: An analysis of the change toward below-replacement-level fertility in Addis Ababa, by Yohannes Kinfu Ashagrea.
Science education reform in a post-colonial developing country in the aftermath of a crisis: the case of Rwanda
, by Jaya Earnest.
Effectiveness of a performance appraisal system in the Mauritian public service: raters' and ratees',. by Nalini L. Luckheenarain
Improving Sahelian food security through facilitating action learning: a case study among the Fulbe Jelgobe of Northern Burkina Faso, by Paul Weekley

Belgium

Universiteit Gent (Ghent University) - Afrikaanse Talen en Culturen
Find Masters theses (full text online, in Dutch) and abstracts of Ph.D. theses in English (some in full text - English in Tanzania: an anatomy of hegemony, by Stephen Mugeta Neke, 2002 and Adoption Potential of two Agroforestry Technologies: Improved Fallows and Domestication of Indigenous Fruit Trees in the Humid Forest and Savannah Zones of Cameroon, by Ann M. I. Degrande, 2005). The University is in Ghent, Belgium. http://www.africana.ugent.be/

Brazil

Biblioteca Digital de Teses e Dissertações, BDTD
In Portuguese. A Digital Library of Theses and Dissertations from higher education institutions in Brazil. A database of citations and of full text online theses. Examples of full text theses below.  [KF] http://bdtd.ibict.br/
Politica educacional da Guine-Bissau de 1975 a 1997.
Dramaturgia angolana no pos-colonialismo : sujeito, nacao e identidade na obra de Jose Mena Abrantes. A Sociedade da informacao : perspectiva para Angola.
Estilhacos da guerra na obra de Lobo Antunes e Pepetela.
Olhares sobre a educao bilingue e seus professores em uma regiao de Mocambique.
Escolaridade em Mocambique: diferenciais regionais e determinantes, 2003.
Estudo de elementos socio-culturais e economicos dos Vatshwa em Inhambane: Um Subsidio Etno-Historico para o Ensino Basico.
Tao longe, tao perto: organizacao familiar e emigracao feminina na Ilha da Boa Vista - Cabo Verde. Perspectiva historica da organizacao do sistema educacional da Guine-Bissau.
CRIANÇAS E ADOLESCENTES EM SITUAÇÃO DE RUA NA CIDADE DE PORTO NOVO: CABO VERDE E SUAS ESTRATÉGIAS DE SOBREVIVÊNCIA.

H-Luso Africa
Lists MA and PhD dissertation and theses in progress sent in by H-Luso Africa list members. Universities are from Africa, Europe, North America, South America. https://networks.h-net.org/node/7926/pages/103973/dissertations-and-theses-progress

Canada

American Historical Association. Directory of Dissertations in Progess
Database of dissertations in progress in the U.S. and Canada. Dissertations are submitted by the university department. http://www.theaha.org/pubs/dissertations/

Canadian Master's Theses and Doctoral Dissertations on Africa,  1905 - 1993
Citations to dissertations can be retrieved by region or country. From the Canadian Association of African Studies. http://caas.concordia.ca/htm/Page/acea.htm

Érudit
In French, some English. Find full text theses through a keyword Search. Erudit is a Canadian university sponsored project to disseminate the results (journals, books, theses, eprints) of university research. http://www.erudit.org/
Examples of theses: FACTEURS SOCIOCULTURELS ET CR?ATION D'ENTREPRISE EN GUIN?E. ?tude exploratoire des ethnies peule et soussou, by Boubacar Diakité (Ph.D. Universite Laval, 2004),

National Library of Canada. Theses Canada
In English and French. "Search AMICUS, Canada's national online catalogue, for bibliographic records of all theses in the National Library of Canada theses collection, which was established in 1965; Access for free the full text electronic versions of Canadian theses and dissertations that were published from the beginning of 1998 to August 31, 2002;..." [KF] http://www.collectionscanada.gc.ca/thesescanada/index-e.html

ProQuest Digital Dissertations
Citations and abstracts for U.S. and Canadian Ph.D. dissertations and master's theses. The same database as the UMI Dissertations Abstracts. Unless your institution subscribes to ProQuest you can only search for the last two years. http://wwwlib.umi.com/dissertations

France

Center for Research Libraries. Foreign Doctoral Dissertations Database
CRL, in Chicago, has more than 750,000 uncataloged foreign doctoral dissertations (from the U.K., France, Sweden, Germany, Netherlands, South Africa, etc.); only about 12,000 of these are in the online database. Members may borrow dissertations. Use the Keyword (or Author, Institution, Title, etc.) search. [KF] 

Memoire Online
In French. Full text of Memoires completed at African and French universities. Some examples follow. Based in Paris, France. http://www.memoireonline.com/

RERO
In French. Online theses and dissertations from higher education institutions in Africa, France, Switzerland. Examples:

Theses.fr
In French. Database of citations for French doctoral theses from 1985 and In Progress theses of the last 10 years. Includes abstracts of the theses and which library holds the thesis. Some theses are freely available online. Maintained by ABES - Agence bibliographique de l'enseignement supérieur. Based in Montpellier, France. [KF] http://www.theses.fr/

India

University of Mumbai. Centre for African Studies. Doctoral Dissertation
Has a list of Ph.D. dissertations awarded or in progress at the University of Mumbai, Mumbai, India. http://www.mu.ac.in/africanstudies/african_dissertation.htm

Nambia

Register of Namibian Theses
Database of theses about Namibia. Access abstracts on theses by keyword, title, language, date. Full text theses will be available. [KF] http://greenstone.unam.na/gsdl/cgi-bin/library See also the University of Namibia Library web site which has the Register of Theses and Dissertations.

Netherlands

Center for Research Libraries. Foreign Doctoral Dissertations Database
CRL, in Chicago, has more than 750,000 uncataloged foreign doctoral dissertations (from the U.K., France, Sweden, Germany, Netherlands, South Africa, etc.); only about 12,000 of these are in the online database. Members may borrow dissertations. Use the Keyword (or Author, Institution, Title, etc.) search. [KF] http://wwwcrl.uchicago.edu/dbdissertations/search.asp

H-Luso Africa
Lists MA and PhD dissertation and theses in progress sent in by H-Luso Africa list members. Universities are from Africa, Europe, North America, South America. https://networks.h-net.org/node/7926/pages/103973/dissertations-and-theses-progress

Leiden University. Research School of Asian, African, and Amerindian Studies (CNWS)
Their monthly Agenda includes lists of Ph.D. theses. http://www.leidenuniv.nl/interfac/cnws/agenda/index.html

Scandinavia

Agricultural University of Norway - Theses
Has many conservation, agricultural projects in Africa. Has a list of masters theses, many on Africa. Provides "education in agriculture, food sciences, management and conservation of natural resources, landscape and community planning and aquaculture." [KF] http://www.nlh.no/noragric/

H-Luso Africa
Lists MA and PhD dissertation and theses in progress sent in by H-Luso Africa list members. Universities are from Africa, Europe, North America, South America. https://networks.h-net.org/node/7926/pages/103973/dissertations-and-theses-progress

University of Bergen - M.A. Theses on Africa
Some M.A. theses for the University are listed on the Chr. Michelsen Institute site. http://www.cmi.no/research/studdiss.htm

University of Oslo (Oslo, Norway)
In Danish. List of masters' theses from 1957 to date. Recent theses have abstracts. Some are on African topics. http://www.sai.uio.no/studier/hoyere_grad/sammendrag-kandidatoppgaver/

Uppsala University - Theses Database
"...database contains the theses of Uppsala University from 1998 to date as well as some theses from 1997. It is an electronic continuation of the printed list Scripta academica and contains 3221 titles including abstracts. As from September 2000 1478 comprehensive summaries and 100 monographs have also been published in full-text." Example - Lindholm, K-J. 2006. Wells of Experience: A pastoral land-use history of Omaheke, Namibia. Studies in Global Archaeology 9. Uppsala: Department of Archaeology and Ancient History. http://publications.uu.se/theses/?lang=en

South Africa

Center for Research Libraries. Foreign Doctoral Dissertations Database
CRL, in Chicago, has more than 750,000 uncataloged foreign doctoral dissertations (from the U.K., France, Sweden, Germany, Netherlands, South Africa, etc.); only about 12,000 of these are in the online database. Members may borrow dissertations. Search the Foreign Doctoral Dissertations Database. [KF] http://www.crl.edu/content.asp?l1=3&l2=15&l3=30

H-Luso Africa
Lists MA and PhD dissertation and theses in progress sent in by H-Luso Africa list members. Universities are from Africa, Europe, North America, South America. https://networks.h-net.org/node/7926/pages/103973/dissertations-and-theses-progress

NISC's Biblioline - Index to South African Theses and Dissertations
Subscription only web database of South African doctoral and masters theses. Some libraries subscribe, thru the web or to the CD-ROM.  Web subscribers select "Subscribers click here for databases", then select "South African Studies". You can limit your search to the theses index. [KF] http://www.nisc.com/

Online Union Catalogs
A search on the subject  Dissertations South Africa in online catalogs such as World Catalog will retrieve many print sources for dissertations.

Rhodes University Library
Rhodes has started to put their dissertations online. Abstracts are available, but the full text is open only to Rhodes University users. [KF] http://opac.seals.ac.za/search/X?(rhodes)+and+(thesis)&searchscope=2&Da=&Db=&SORT=D For example see, Van Vlaenderen, Hilde Rachel Maurice, "Group problem solving among community activists in a South African setting: an everyday cognition approach" (Grahamstown: Rhodes University, 1997. Thesis (Ph.D. (Psychology)) - Rhodes University, 1997.)

University of Cape Town
http://www.lib.uct.ac.za/index.php?html=/etds/etds.htm

University of the Free State Electronic Theses and Dissertations
Browse by subject, title, author or date to find full text dissertations online. See their Digital Repository including full text journal articles from Perspectives in Education, Journal for Contemporary History and moreUFS is based in Bloemfontein. http://scholar.ufs.ac.za:8080/xmlui/handle/11660/607

University of Johannesburg. Electronic Thesis and Dissertation Database (ETD-db)
Browse theses by subject, author, title or date. Provides abstracts. The full text is in PDF. The University of Johannesburg was formed from a merger between Rand Afrikaans University, Technikon Witwatersrand and several campuses of Vista University. http://etd.rau.ac.za/

University of KwaZulu Natal - ResearchSpace
"...access to full-text digital theses and dissertations." http://researchspace.ukzn.ac.za/xmlui

University of Pretoria Electronic Theses and Dissertations
Browse by department or author or search for specific words to find full text theses and dissertations online. A few require a password to access and some are not available online at all. Has a link to other theses sites worldwide. http://upetd.up.ac.za/
Example of full text:

  • The psychological impact of guerilla warfare on the boer forces during the Anglo-Boer war. By A. J. McLeod.
  • The Natal Afrikaner and The Anglo-Boer War. By Johannes Michiel Wassermann.

University of South Africa - UnisaETD : Electronic Theses and Dissertations
Free access to abstracts and the full text of recent (2003, 2004, 2005, 2006, 2007) Unisa theses and dissertations. Browse by author or department. See Examples. [KF] http://etd.unisa.ac.za/ETD-db/ETD-browse/browse

University of the Western Cape - Electronic Thesis and Dissertation Library
Full-text access to theses submitted for degree purposes at UWC. http://etd.uwc.ac.za/

University of the Witwatersrand. Electronic Theses & Dissertations
Search for Wits masters and doctoral theses and dissertations in their online catalog; but full text access is restricted. Use keyword thesis and your subject. http://hermes.wits.ac.za/www/Library/ETD%20intro/etd_info.htm

Switzerland

H-Luso Africa
Lists MA and PhD dissertation and theses in progress sent in by H-Luso Africa list members. Universities are from Africa, Europe, North America, South America. https://networks.h-net.org/node/7926/pages/103973/dissertations-and-theses-progress

RERO
In French. Online theses and dissertations from higher education institutions in Africa, France, Switzerland.
Examples:
Acces et recours aux soins de sante dans la sous-prefecture de Ouesse (Benin) / Jean-Luc Richard. - (Suisse), 2001. (1134 pages). http://www.rero.ch/La contribution de l'education a la croissance ?conomique du S?n?gal / Auteur: Sow, Abdramane, 2013

Swiss National Library
One can order from the National Library copies of dissertations on African topics completed at Swiss universities.  http://www.snl.ch
For a list of Swiss dissertations, see Pfister, Roger (1997). Bibliography of Swiss Doctoral Dissertations on sub-Saharan Africa, 1897-1996. Berne, Switzerland: Swiss National Commission for UNESCO. 76p. The list by Pfister, plus updates, are on the CD-ROM "African Studies" sold by the National Information Services Corporation (NISC): http://www.nisc.com

United Kingdom

African Studies Association of the U.K. - Africanist Theses Recently Accepted at U.K. Universities
List of theses from 2005 onwards. http://www.asauk.net/theses.html

British Library. British Thesis Service - EThOS
About EThOS. EThOS FAQ. Purchase copies of theses. "Almost all UK universities make their theses available through the Service." One needs to register (free) if you want to download a thesis from EThOS or to order digitisation of a thesis." [KF] http://ethos.bl.uk/

Center for Research Libraries. Foreign Doctoral Dissertations
CRL, in Chicago, has foreign doctoral dissertations (from the U.K., France, Sweden, Germany, Netherlands, South Africa, etc.). CRL Members may borrow dissertations. http://www.crl.edu/collections/topics/dissertations

CISTI, Canada Institute for Scientific and Technical Information
Has a document supply service, is reportedly able to supply on microfilm UK theses for $50.00. They are partners with the British Library Document Supply Centre. http://www.nrc.ca/cisti

Harvard University. Atlantic History Seminar. Dissertations in Atlantic History
Abstracts only. Has for the University of College, London, "The Sons of Neptune and the Sons of Ham: Slave Ship Sailors and Their Captive Cargoes" by Emma Christopher. [KF] http://www.fas.harvard.edu/~atlantic/Dissertations/dissertationsgeneral.html

H-Luso Africa
Lists MA and PhD dissertation and theses in progress sent in by H-Luso Africa list members. Universities are from Africa, Europe, North America, South America. https://networks.h-net.org/node/7926/pages/103973/dissertations-and-theses-progress

Index to Theses
Subscription access only. "listing of theses with abstracts accepted for higher degrees by universities in Great Britain and Ireland since 1716." Cost - £410 and up depending on region. [KF] http://www.theses.com/

Institute of Historical Research (University of London, School of Advanced Study) - History On-Line
Its History On-Line has a keyword searchable database of U.K. history theses completed and in progress. Publishes the print annual, Theses in Progress, which lists theses on Africa in progress or completed at U.K. universities. [KF] http://www.history.ac.uk/

Lauer, Joseph - Recent Doctoral Dissertations About Africa
A listing of Doctoral Dissertations and Master's Theses on Africa from the United States, Canada and the United Kingdom. Compiled by Dr. Lauer, the Africana Librarian at Michigan State University. The lists also appeared in ASA News until mid 2009. Covers from March 2009 onwards. http://staff.lib.msu.edu/lauer/theses/index.htm

United States

Academic Dissertation Publishers
Mainly U.S. Ph.D. dissertations and Masters theses online. The "first 25 pages are available free of charge." Obtain a copy of complete dissertations in Adobe PDF format for $6 or order a bound copy starting at $19.95. Titles include "Institutional Change in the Horn of Africa: the allocation of property rights and implications for development," by Sandra F. Joireman (1995, UCLA).   [KF] http://www.dissertation.com/

African Studies Association (U.S.)
Issues of the organization's ASA News contain bibliographies of U.S. and Canadian dissertations on Africa, Recent Doctoral Disserations, compiled by Joseph Lauer. They are arranged by subject. Example - July 2007, Vol. 40, No. 3 (47 p. in PDF). http://www.africanstudies.org/ See Lauer, Joseph below for current lists.

American Historical Association. Directory of Dissertations in Progess
Database of dissertations in progress in the U.S. and Canada. Dissertations are submitted by the university department. http://www.theaha.org/pubs/dissertations/

Center for Research Libraries
Doctoral Dissertations
CRL, in Chicago, has more than 800,000 doctoral dissertations (from the U.K., France, Sweden, Germany, Netherlands, South Africa, Kenya, etc.). Background on the Dissertations.

CAMP Members may request dissertations for purchase by CRL.
CAMP By-Laws, Appendix II: Schedule of Demand Purchase Expenses
1. Items costing up to $200 - requests go directly to CAMP administrator at CRL who processes the request.
2. Items costing $200-$600 - requests go to the Chairperson of the CAMP Executive Committee who acts upon the request following the guidelines of CAMP policy. The
Chairperson forwards the request to the CAMP administrator at CRL for processing.

Diplomica Online
Provides Ph.D. dissertations and masters theses by e-mail or in print form. No prices given. Based in Pittsburg, PA, they work with U.S. and German academic organizations such as NDLTD, Bavarian State Libraries. [KF] http://www.diplomica.com/

Dissertation Abstracts
UMI Online Dissertation Services sells copies of dissertations which you can locate through Dissertation Abstracts which many universities subscribe to; ask your Reference Librarian. Citations and abstracts for U.S. and Canadian Ph.D. dissertations and master's theses. [Stanford users access through Proquest Digital Dissertations or see Dissertation Abstracts on the All Databases page.] [KF] http://www.umi.com/hp/Products/Dissertations.html
Stanford Users see Dissertation Abstracts and Stanford full text dissertations online. You need to put and between the search keywords.
Stanford University dissertations are no longer in Dissertation Abstracts as a routine matter. From approx. 2010 they will be listed in Google. See article from Stanford Report, October 29, 2009 - http://news.stanford.edu/news/2009/october26/electronic-dissertation-pilot-102909.html

Dissertation.com
"The primary function of Dissertation.com is to provide students, researchers, and the general public with low cost access to important academic work." Each title is about $30. One can see the first 25 pages for free (in Adobe PDF format). Has for ex. "Sozio-?konomische Wirkungen der Anlage von Steinkonturw?llen in kleinb?uerlichen Betrieben der Provinz Bam/Burkina Faso," by Dagmar Kunze and "Institutional Change in the Horn of Africa: the allocation of property rights and implications for development" by Sandra F. Joireman. The theses are also available thru e-book sellers, Amazon, Barnes & Noble, Borders. [KF] http://www.dissertation.com/

H-Africa
Lists dissertation information sent in by H-Africa members since 1995.Includes an abstract supplied by the author. http://h-net2.msu.edu/~africa/biblio/index.html

H-Luso Africa
Lists MA and PhD dissertation and theses in progress sent in by H-Luso Africa list members. Universities are from Africa, Europe, North America, South America. https://networks.h-net.org/node/7926/pages/103973/dissertations-and-theses-progress

Lauer, Joseph - Recent Doctoral Dissertations About Africa
A listing of Doctoral Dissertations and Master's Theses on Africa from the United States, Canada and the United Kingdom. Compiled by Dr. Lauer, the Africana Librarian at Michigan State University. The lists also appeared in ASA News until mid 2009. Covers from March 2009 onwards. http://staff.lib.msu.edu/lauer/theses/index.htm Note: Stanford University dissertations are no longer in Dissertation Abstracts as a routine matter. From approx. 2010 they will be listed in Google. See article from Stanford Report, October 29, 2009 - http://news.stanford.edu/news/2009/october26/electronic-dissertation-pilot-102909.html

Levine, S. Joseph - Writing and Presenting Your Thesis or Dissertation
Dr. Levine is with the Department of Agricultural and Extension Education, Michigan State University, East Lansing, Michigan. http://www.msue.msu.edu/aee/dissthes/guide.htm

MIT Theses Online
Has selected MIT theses only. For example, has the full text of U.N. Secretary General Kofi Annan's thesis, "International joint venture with a government partner case study: copper mining in Zambia." http://theses.mit.edu/

Networked Digital Library of Theses and Dissertations
Find abstracts and full text theses and dissertations by language. Use the SCIRUS ETD Search to find titles by subject, author, title, institution. "(NDLTD) is an international organization dedicated to promoting the adoption, creation, use, dissemination and preservation of electronic analogues to the traditional paper-based theses and dissertations." Based at Blacksburg, Virginia. http://www.ndltd.org/ http://alcme.oclc.org/ndltd/index.html
Examples of full text Ph.D. dissertations:

  • The Groundnut Market in Senegal: Examination of Price and Policy Changes, by James Katon Gray (Ph.D. Virginia Tech, Agricultural and Applied Economics, 2002.)
  • Spatio-Temporal Effects of Land Use Changes in A Savanna Wildlife Area of Kenya, by Enos E.Esikuri (Ph.D. Virginia Tech, Fisheries and Wildlife Sciences, 1998.)

Ohio University Libraries - African Studies-Related Dissertations and Theses
List, by country then by subject, of Ohio University's African studies theses. http://www.library.ohiou.edu/subjects/africa/diss.html

Stanford University Dissertations
Open only to Stanford users. Full text dissertations from 1989 + in Adobe .pdf format. Many universities also have their own dissertations online open only to their users; please ask your librarian. Files are large (ex. 17 MB) and need to be downloaded to your computer. [KF] http://wwwlib.umi.com/cr/stanford/main

University of Florida Africa-Related Dissertations and Theses, 1956 +
Arranged by author with subject and country indexes and indexes by department and degree. http://web.uflib.ufl.edu/cm/africana/disserta.htm

University of Pennsylvania
Free online Univ of Pennsylvania dissertations. Also free abstracts for purchase only theses & dissertations. http://repository.upenn.edu/edissertations/ http://repository.upenn.edu/etd.html

University of Pittsburg - Electronic Theses and Dissertations
Full text on-line theses and dissertations. http://www.pitt.edu/%7Egraduate/etd/

University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign
Africa-Related Theses and Dissertations at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, 1988-2000 (arranged by subject) http://www.afrst.uiuc.edu/Library/Diss1988-2000.html
Africa-Related Theses and Dissertations at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, 1921-1988 [KF] http://www.afrst.uiuc.edu/Library/Diss1921-88.html

University of Pittsburg. Health Sciences Library System - Recent Dissertations in the Medical Humanities
Citations only. [If your university subscribes to ProQuest Digital Dissertations, you may see abstracts and selected pages.] Includes some Africa-related dissertations. See for ex. the subjects: AIDS (Social and Historical Contexts), Public Health/International Health, etc. Maintained by John Erlen, University of Pittsburgh. [KF] http://www.hsls.pitt.edu/guides/histmed/researchresources/dissertations/index_html

Print and other sources

ASA News"Recent Doctoral Dissertations" - by Joseph J. Lauer and others.
Each issue of the African Studies Association (U.S.) newsletter, ASA News, carries a list, by subject, of recent American, Canadian, and U.K. dissertations

Center for Research Libraries (U.S.) Foreign doctoral dissertations purchased on demand by the Center for Research Libraries.
Chicago : The Center [1980?]. 29 p. [At Stanford, see: Hoover Reference Librarian's Desk Z3509 .C46

Center for Research Libraries. Handbook. Dissertations.
Has a list of world wide print sources for dissertations. Describes their dissertation collection program (most are not cataloged). Based in Chicago. http://www.crl.edu/content.asp?l1=5&l2=22&l3=39&top=11

Chanson-Jabeur, Chantal.
L'Histoire africaine en Afrique : recensement analytique des travaux universitaires inedits soutenus dans les Universites francophones d'Afrique noire ... /Chantal Chanson-Jabeur, Catherine Coquery-Vidrovitch, eds. Paris : L'Harmattan, 1995. 245 p.

Denzer, LaRay. "Africans with Northwestern University Ph.D.s."
In Vision and Policy in Nigerian economics: the Legacy of Pius Okigbo, edited by Jane I. Guyer and LaRay Denzer. Lagos, Nigeria: Centre for Social Science Research and Development.

Gerdes, Paulos
African Doctorates in Mathematics. A Catalogue and Doctoral Theses by Mozambicans and about Mozambique can be ordered in print or digital form from the Lulu.com site. Lulu was founded by Bob Young, the co-founder of Red Hat, the Linux company. http://stores.lulu.com/pgerdes

Larby, Patricia M.
Theses on Africa completed at U.K. universities, 1994-1996: Part 1, Africa in general, West Africa, Central Africa, in African Research & Documentation, No. 77, 1998

Larby, Patricia M.
Theses on Africa completed at U.K. universities, 1994-1996: Part 2, Eastern Africa, Southern Africa, in African Research & Documentation, No. 78, 1998

University of Swaziland. Master's Degree Abstracts.
Vol. 1. Abstract Numbers 1-40. Luyengo: UNISWA Research Centre, 2005. 64 pages. Organization by Prof. O. T. Edje.

Portuguese Studies Review - Dissertations and Theses Section
Lists dissertations on Lusophone Africa from the U.K., Portugal, Canada, U.S. Based at the Univ. of New Hampshire, Durham, New Hampshire.

Synopses of abstracts of Ph.d and master theses : 1990-2007.
By V. O. Aghayere, V. A. Uhunmwangho, and M. E. Ufuah. Ekpoma [Nigeria]: School of Postgraduate Studies, Ambrose Alli University, 2007. 869 p. ISBN: 9789780823658

Union List of Theses and Dissertations held by Universities and Research Institutions in Kenya
Nairobi: Kenya Information Preservation Society. Annual. Began publication with Issue no. 1 (Mar. 2003) - no. 2 (2005). On CD-ROM.

Universeity of Lagos - Ph.D. / M.Phil theses & dissertation abstracts 1970-2008
3rd. ed. Imprint: Lagos, Nigeria : University of Lagos Akoka-Yaba, School of Postgraduate Studies, 2008. 778 pages

Yale University. African Collection
Has a list of print sources for dissertations about Africa. http://www.library.yale.edu/african/VIII.htm

ARTICLES
PROGRAMAS E PROJETOS NACIONAIS E INTERNACIONAIS

 

The Brazilian electronic theses and dissertations digital library: providing open access for scholarly information

 

Biblioteca digital brasileira de teses e dissertações eletrônicas: provendo acesso livre à informação acadêmica

 

 

Sílvia Barcellos Southwick

Ph. D. Information Transfer, Syracuse University, School of Information Studies. SUNY Buffalo, School of Informatics of Library and Information Studies. E-mail: silvia@ibict.br

 

 


ABSTRACT

This paper describes a project led by the Instituto Brasileiro de Informações em Ciência e Tecnologia (Ibict), a government institution, to build a national digital library for electronic theses and dissertations – Bibliteca Digital de Teses e Dissertações (BDTD). The project has been a collaborative effort among Ibict, universities and other research centers in Brazil. The developers adopted a system architecture based on the Open Archives Initiative (OAI) in which universities and research centers act as data providers and Ibict as a service provider. A Brazilian metadata standard for electronic theses and dissertations was developed for the digital library. A toolkit including open source package was also developed by Ibict to be distributed to potential data providers. BDTD has been integrated with the international initiative: the Networked Digital Library of Thesis and Dissertation (NDLTD). Discussions in the paper address various issues related to project design, development and management as well as the role played by Ibict. Conclusions highlight some important lessons learned to date and challenges for the future in expanding the BDTD project.

Keywords: Digital library. Electronic theses and dissertations. Open archives. Open archives initiative. Information system development. Metadata standards. Biblioteca Digital de Teses e Dissertações (BDTD).


RESUMO

Este artigo descreve o projeto liderado pelo Instituto Brasileiro de Informação em Ciência e Tecnologia (Ibict), instituição governamental, para construção de uma biblioteca digital nacional de teses e dissertações eletrônicas Biblioteca Digital de Teses e Dissertações (BDTD). O projeto é um esforço colaborativo entre o Ibict, universidades e outros centros de pesquisa no Brasil. No planejamento do sistema foi adotada arquitetura de sistema baseada na Open Archives Iniciative (OAI), na qual universidades e centros de pesquisas atuam como provedores de dados e, o Ibict, como provedor de serviço. O Ibict desenvolveu para a biblioteca digital um padrão brasileiro de metadados para teses e dissertações eletrônicas e um conjunto de ferramentas, incluindo pacote de arquivos abertos, a ser distribuído entre potenciais provedores de dados. A BDTD está integrada à iniciativa internacional Networked Digital Library of Thesis and Dissertation (NDLTD). As discussões deste artigo estão direcionadas à concepção do projeto, ao seu desenvolvimento e gestão, bem como ao papel desempenhado pelo Ibict. As conclusões destacam algumas importantes lições atuais e mudanças futuras, visando a expansão do projeto da BDTD.

Palavras-chaves: Biblioteca digital. Teses e dissertações eletrônicas. Arquivos abertos. Iniciativas de arquivos abertos. Desenvolvimento de sistemas de informação. Padrões de metadados. Biblioteca Digital de Teses e Dissertações (BDTD).


 

 

INTRODUCTION

This paper presents a description of a national digital library project for scholarly information in Brazil: the Biblioteca Digital de Teses e Dissertações (BDTD). The BDTD project has national significance since efficient and reliable computing infrastructures for communicating and distributing scholarly publications contribute to a country's development. Nevertheless, developing such a system has significant challenges. For example, in democratic societies a system should provide open access to information to a wide range of users1. In order to ensure open access in the BDTD project, developers of the systems implemented the methods and technologies proposed by the Open Archives Initiative (OAI)2. As will be detailed in this paper, the OAI has been instrumental to the success of the BDTD project.

In terms of the more technical challenges, a digital library for scholarly communication must be highly integrated. The quest for system integration is an overriding consideration in all phases of the development lifecycle. There are two important dimensions to integration. First, it is necessary to integrate the often disparate systems of the scholarly communities within the geographic borders of the country. Of course this represents a technical challenge of creating a system that ensures interoperability among user communities. In addition it is important to add that there is also the equally challenging change management task of developing a cooperative social network among developers and users of various institutions. Secondly, system developers must consider that national systems must be able to integrate with the wider information networks of the international community of scholarly institutions. Again, the goals here are both technical and social (or cultural) in nature.

Developing an open, well integrated digital library for scholarly communication is costly in terms of both capital expenditures for information technologies and the time that must be devoted by human resources. This presents an additional challenge for developing countries. The challenge of money is obvious. The challenge of human resources for development is more complex. It is critical that there be a knowledgeable internal pool of system developers, however it is also critical that developers have reliable day-to-day access to information about the continuously evolving Internet-based information technologies that form the basis for such a system. Decision-making about standards for new information technologies is frequently led by communities of experts in the developed world with limited input from developing countries. It is critical that developers within developing countries participate in discussions about scholarly communication technology and standards. For the BDTD project Internet discussion boards formed by developers of digital libraries proved valuable in this regard.

The case of the BDTD project illustrates some of the issues detailed above. The Instituto Brasileiro de Informação em Ciencia e Tecnologia (Ibict), a Brazilian government institution, has assumed a central role in the development of this project. This involvement is consistent with the historical background of Ibict. In 2004 Ibict celebrated its 50th anniversary as a government institution. Over the course of its existence Ibict has primarily worked with the information community in Brazil with the goals of: (1) supporting Brazilian information centers, research centers and universities (data providers) to develop local information systems; (2) designing and implementing national information systems to facilitate integration of the various local initiatives. The former of these goals has required Ibict to work closely with the information community to develop standards and tools to support local developers. The latter goal has involved integrative development and hosting of national information systems and services.

Many stakeholders provided valuable input that contributed to the success of the BDTD project. In particular key people in early adopting institutions such as Universidade de São Paulo, Universidade Federal de Santa Catarina and Pontificia Universidade Católica do Rio de Janeiro have been, and continue to be, critical both to the BDTD project and for the overall goal of providing open access to scholarly information in Brazil. While acknowledging the contributions of these and many other people and institutions, in this paper the author focuses on the particular activities and contributions of Ibict, since this is the perspective gained through the author's experience with the project. The author had a lead management role in the BDTD project.

The technical context provided by continuous innovation of the Internet, and more particularly for the project described here, the Open Archive Initiative and open source technologies, bear important implications for organizations undertaking digital library initiatives. For Ibict, exposure to these innovations highlighted the need to transform its relationship with clients. Developing networked infrastructure and information standards were, historically, major concerns in prior projects. However, for the BDTD project these concerns were largely overshadowed by a growing recognition of the critical need for Ibict to facilitate the transfer of technical knowledge across geographic and cultural borders.

This paper begins with a discussion of events leading up to the project. The author then gives an overview of the project followed by a discussion of key issues. The paper concludes with some of the important lessons that the author has drawn from her involvement. Hopefully, readers will find this information useful for their own current and future digital library projects.

 

PROJECT BACKGROUND

Recognizing the capabilities of contemporary networked computing, along with initiatives undertaken in the international community, at the end of 2001 a proposal to build the Brazilian Digital Library was written by Ibict. The proposal received substantial funding from the Finaciadora de Estudos e Pesquisas (Finep), a Brazilian government-funding agency. Among the various projects included in this proposal was the Digital Library for Theses and Dissertations (BDTD) project.

Prior to project approval, a group of consultants and information community representatives had been formed in 2001 to conduct an informal feasibility study of the system. By that time noteworthy efforts in Brazilian electronic theses and dissertations (ETD) digital libraries included systems built by the Universidade de São Paulo, Universidade Federal de Santa Catarina and Pontificia Universidade Católica do Rio de Janeiro. These local initiatives which began as early as 1995 adopted ETD technologies and metadata standards that were largely independent from other projects in Brazil.

The feasibility study pointed to two major directions for the BDTD project: (1) development of a national metadata standard for ETD; (2) adoption of various concurrent solutions for integrating national repositories, such as: meta-search engine, Z39.50 standard, and the Open Archive Initiative (OAI) protocol for metadata harvesting (OAI-pmh). These recommendations were re-evaluated during the actual system design leading to a concentration of efforts on the adoption of the OAI technologies (as the mechanism to integrate ETD repositories) and an expansion of Ibict's focus in order to provide support for local ETD digital library implementations (universities and research centers).

 

PROJECT DESCRIPTION

At the beginning of 2002 the BDTD project was approved with the primary goal of building a national digital library of theses and dissertations by integrating various national initiatives as well as promoting the integration of the national ETD digital library with international initiatives. In order to accomplish this goal, the project had the following objectives:

• design and implement a national ETD digital library system to promote integration of local, national and international initiatives;

• establish a national metadata standard for ETD;

• develop and distribute a software toolkit with implementation and training modules to be installed in local ETD digital libraries at universities and other research centers.

Following project approval, a project steering committee was created comprising representatives of the three universities mentioned above, Ibict, designated experts in the area, and various important government stakeholder agencies.

The following sections give an overview of the three objectives.

BDTD system architecture

The architecture adopted in designing the national BDTD was based on the Open Archive Initiative (OAI). Universities and research centers act as data providers and Ibict as a service provider. Metadata (in the national metadata format standard) is harvested from the data providers to create a central metadata repository in Ibict. This central repository exposes ETD metadata to other harvesters in two formats: etd-ms and Dublin Core.

An information retrieval system was implemented in the central repository to allow end-users to conduct integrated searching on theses and dissertations in Brazil3. Information indicators will be implemented in the future to track metrics such as national growth in ETD publications and subject trends in specific areas.

The Metadata Standard

Although international metadata standards for ETD existed (e.g., etd-ms4), it was necessary to create a national standard in order to include specific metadata elements to meet national information needs. The national ETD metadata standard, named Padrão Brasileiro deMetadados de Teses e Dissertações (mtd-br5) contains four types of metadata:

• bibliographic – identifies the ETD bibliographic data

• people – identifies uniquely each individual related to a ETD such as author or dissertation committee members

• organization – uniquely identifies the organizations related to the ETD, for example, university or research center where the ETD was produced

• hyperlinks – indicate the electronic locations of the full text of ETDs or other digital objects related to ETDs

The rationale for including specific metadata about people and organizations in the Brazilian ETD metadata standard was to facilitate integration of the ETD digital library with other national repositories. For example, the Conselho Nacional de Desenvolvimento Científico e Tecnológico – CNPq, a government institution, maintains a well-established repository of investigator résumés (called Plataforma Lattes6). Using the metadata for people, it is possible to see résumés of advisor or committee members from an ETD record in BDTD. Many records in the BDTD already have the needed metadata for such integration between repositories.

In designing the mtd-br it was also important for the purpose of interoperability to assure that the national ETD metadata standard would comply with Dublin Core7 and etd-ms (mentioned above) metadata standards.

The Toolkit

Having given careful consideration to the variance in technological resources and expertise among the potential participants of the BDTD initiative, it was decided by Ibict that a toolkit should be made available for distribution. The toolkit was designed with the purpose of giving technical support to organizations requiring it, and as a means for diffusing methods and standards for creating local ETD digital libraries. The current toolkit comprises:

• a software package for ETD publishing

• a program for implementing the OAI protocol for metadata harvesting

• a training module

• equipment

A brief description of the toolkit components follows.

Software package for ETD publishing

Developed by Ibict, this open-source package (called TEDE) automates the processes needed to electronically publish theses and dissertations. The package builds a local ETD digital library utilizing the national metadata standard. It was initially based on the etd-db8 developed by Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University (Virginia Tech). Similar to etd-db, it also assumes that authors, libraries and graduate schools have specific roles in the electronic publishing processes. However, this assumption was not always well received by the universities. In response, Ibict developed an alternative, simplified version of the ETD publishing package in which the local library becomes solely responsible for the ETD publication.

The choice of an open source solution was based on four criteria: (1) the software package needed to be free of charge since many of the universities face budget restrictions; (2) university implementers should be able to adapt the package to their current computing environment - i.e., implementers should be able to integrate the ETD publication package to existing university systems; (3) the software package should be written in a programming language widely known by implementers in Brazil; (4) new versions or improvements in the package should involve a collaborative effort among the project participants.

Program for implementing the protocol for metadata harvesting

Programs for implementing the OAI protocol for metadata harvesting (OAI-pmh9) were retrieved from the OAI website. The protocol implementation allows integration between the local ETD digital libraries and the BDTD as well as between the BDTD and international initiatives. The Ibict project team adapted these programs in order to support the national metadata standard. The adapted versions were then made available to data providers interested in implementing the OAI protocol in their local ETD digital libraries. There are different versions of these programs: a version to be used in association to the ETD publishing package (mentioned above); other versions that are more easily adapted to existing ETD initiatives which use technologies other than the one distributed by Ibict; and a version to be used by service providers (or aggregators). The OAI implementers' discussion list, available on the OAI website, played an important role in providing knowledge about these programs to the Ibict project team.

Training

The training module provides an opportunity for Ibict to instruct participants in the use of the technologies being distributed. It is also designed for discussing the particular methodology to be employed in implementing the ETD-DL system at local levels, and to introduce new concepts associated with the project – e.g., a networked digital library, harvesting processes, protocol OAI-pmh, etc. The training has been primarily designed for information and computer professionals.

Metadata Standard

Documentation of the metadata standards has also been made available for data providers. Training emphasizes the importance of its adoption for interoperability purposes.

Equipment

Limited monetary resources were also included in the BDTD project for donating equipment to potential data providers that lacked technological resources required to launch an ETD digital library. To date, approximately 27 organizations have received equipment, although some have not yet launched their local ETD digital libraries. Distribution of new equipment is not usually essential for building the BDTD. This aspect of the project was implemented in order to overcome client concerns about inadequate technology. Criteria were established for assessing client technology needs.

 

DISCUSSION

The following discussion focuses on several key factors leading to the success of the BDTD project. Although these factors are based on anecdotal data they reflect the collective input of project team members, administrators at Ibict and key people in data providing institutions. The discussion here addresses the following aspects of the project design and implementation:

• technological infrastructure

• project governance

• project management

• project installation

Technological Infrastructure

Since the Internet provides the essential underlying platform for the BDTD system, design considerations have been, and continue to be, strongly guided toward a distributed architecture for data and processes. This fact, combined with the strong influence of the OAI on design considerations, has implications for the roles and nature of participation of organizations involved with the BDTD and similar systems. The independence of data providers concerning adoption of the most suitable system solution for their own particular ETD digital library was critical to the relatively strong degree of acceptance that BDTD received from the data providers. There have been only two requirements for data providers to participate in the BDTD system: adopt the Brazilian ETD metadata standard (mtd-br) and expose their ETD metadata using the protocol for metadata harvesting proposed by the Open Archives Initiative.

In addition to the importance of the Internet as a technical infrastructure for building networked systems, it is also important to emphasize two other features of the Internet that have significantly contributed to the BDTD development: (1) a communication medium for knowledge transfer; (2) an open source software repository.

The Internet was used extensively by the Ibict project team for acquiring knowledge (on an international scale) of advances in technology and standards for digital libraries. In designing and implementing the BDTD the project team was able to monitor trends in the area as well as to electronically communicate with researchers and implementers working on similar initiatives elsewhere. As a result, the project became aligned with similar initiatives in other countries and regions, ensuring adoption of leading-edge ETD technology.

In order to appreciate the path this project has taken it is necessary to consider the influence of the decision to adopt open source technology and methods. Open source technologies and practices are freely available on the Internet and readily allow for adaptation to local needs since access is available to users and developers at all levels. Open source packages retrieved from several sites on the Internet served as prototypes for the project. These packages allowed for an extensive amount of experimentation and learning as the project team advanced in developing and implementing the system. Consequently, Ibict was able to lead development of a more suitable open source package to meet the needs of the BDTD project.

Project Governance

The BDTD is based on a collaborative effort. Data providers are active participants on the learning process since they need to acquire the knowledge for building and maintaining their own local ETD digital libraries. For its role, Ibict needed to assume a role of knowledge mediator. This meant acquiring up-to-date knowledge about digital library and ETD technologies, and diffusing this knowledge among data providers (Southwick & Southwick, 2003). However, it is important to point out that this role for Ibict does not apply to all relations between Ibict and data providers. At this point, for example, several of the data providers have taken a more active lead in developing and maintaining their local systems, and do not depend on the knowledge diffused through Ibict. These providers acquire knowledge from other sources.

In adopting the role of knowledge mediator, Ibict's project team has positioned itself as an expert resource in the area of digital libraries. Ibict became a resource for data providers to discuss and solve problems related to local and national ETD digital libraries implementations. As the project management competencies of Ibict became increasingly recognized within the government, and as this recognition became acculturated within Ibict, negotiations for project expansion with other government agencies and international organizations such as UNESCO were made easier. This latter point has political significance to the degree that perceptions of Ibict's competence as a project leader may influence future administrative decisions concerning the direction of the BDTD and related projects.

Project Management

Managing the project has been a process of learning the trends in the area, developing tools and standards with a small group of experienced ETD digital library implementers (e. g., early developers of ETD digital libraries in Brazil), and later, inviting the client community to participate in the project.

The structure for project management has had a direct impact the pace of the project. Decisions have been generally made by Ibict's project manager. When necessary the steering committee has been consulted. The autonomy and flexibility given to the project manager during design and implementation phases of the BDTD was particularly important in enabling the learning process and readjustment of the project design during the course of its development. A more hierarchical and rigid structure would have prevent the "learning by doing" (Arrow, 1962) approach that was essential, given the dynamic, emergent nature of the technology. This agile process allowed the project to stay on pace and on schedule.

Project Installation

The starting point in the BDTD project implementation was the installation of four pilot-projects. Prior to implementation Ibict's project team visited the selected universities to foster client commitment to the project. A project presentation was delivered as a way to convey the importance of the project to university administrators, master and doctorate program directors, developers and students.

For the installation of the system a toolkit was distributed followed by 2 days of training. A methodology for implementing the local ETD digital library was suggested in which the university would create two committees: one at strategic level and one at operational level. Although the project received wide acceptance in all four universities, internal issues delayed the actual launch of two of these local projects.

Since its initial phase of installation BDTD has already produced important outcomes. At this date the system harvests 28 Brazilian local ETD digital libraries (Appendix 1), producing a central metadata repository of approximately 21,000 theses and dissertations. The central metadata repository has also been harvested by OCLC, promoting the integration of the Brazilian ETD central repository with the NDLTD union catalog10.

To date, approximately 100 potential data providers have already received the toolkit and training. Most of these institutions are working toward launching local ETD digital libraries. Currently Ibict is working directly with 44 organizations. Of those, 28 have already launched their local ETD digital libraries (8 adopted their own system solution and 20 adopted the open software system developed by Ibict). The remainder of these organizations are in system test phase.

Data from the past year shows that the number of theses and dissertations included in the BDTD almost doubled (from around 12,000 in June 2005 to around 21,000 in June 2006). It is anticipated that the growth of BDTD will increase on an even faster pace as data providers currently in test phase begin to contribute metadata. The Registry of Open Access Repositories (ROAR11) shows BDTD as one of the biggest ETD initiatives, second only to NDLTD.

The project has also been extended to several universities in South American countries outside Brazil (e.g., Argentina, Colombia, Uruguay and Venezuela). These universities received the toolkit developed by Ibict. Most recently, representatives of the Chilean University Library System visited Ibict to become acquainted with the Brazilian initiative and to propose a Latin American ETD Digital Library.

 

CONCLUSIONS

The experience of participating in the BDTD project provided an opportunity for positive change for both Ibict and for the community of data providers (universities and research centers). For Ibict this involved a new approach to working with its client community. In the past the development of information system projects tended to focus on technological infra-structure and rules for community participation. In the BDTD project it has been necessary for Ibict to foster a more collaborative effort in reaching the common goal of making scholarly literature openly accessible on the Internet. In this vein Ibict has taken on the role of knowledge mediator, assisting in project processes led and "owned" by the data providers.

For the BDTD data providers it has been an opportunity to take on a proactive role in building digital libraries for scholarly communication. By "owning" their projects and data, providers have developed new information skills and competencies as they have worked toward creating their own ETD digital library, and exposing their metadata to national and international initiatives. The technology developed by Ibict has been seen as an alternative solution for those organizations that might need it. Other data providers have chosen their own technical solutions. In either case, data providers have generally shown a high interest in participating in the BDTD initiative since it represents an opportunity to become "visible" at local, national and international levels.

At the current stage of the project most of the technical challenges have been overcome. Now is an opportunity to consider the many lessons that have been learned from the project to date, and to use this knowledge to move the project forward. In particular it is an opportunity to look more closely at organizational issues of ETD system adoption; that is, the organizational issues and challenges that data providers face in implementing the BDTD. It is already clear to the Ibict project team that client institutions differ in both resource needs and culture. However, there is little understanding by the project team of these issues. For example, several prominent issues were revealed during initial phases of the implementation:

• Some universities do not have well defined workflow for processing theses and dissertations. The adoption of the ETD publication package requires an organized workflow in which the graduate school has the final approval of the electronic version of the thesis or dissertation.

• While some university administrators welcome the idea of making their scholarly publications available on the Internet, others are resistant to exposure because of perceptions of publication quality, or concerns about copyright for electronically published theses and dissertations.

• University libraries demonstrated a high interest in participating in the project. However, it is unclear whether libraries generally possess the authority, expertise, or high-level support to lead information technology projects.

In addition, there is a discrepancy between the number of organizations trained (100) and the number that are actively participating as data providers to date (28). These issues reinforce the need for Ibict to acquire a better understanding of adoption issues in order to promote a nationwide adoption of the BDTD. Toward this end it is clear that it is now time for a detailed assessment of the project as we move forward. By identifying critical success factors in the BDTD implementation and issues of risk it is hoped that the BDTD project will have even greater success in the future.

 

ACKNOWLEDGMENTS

Many people have contributed to my experience with the project and it is not possible to list every person without running the risk of omitting someone. Thank you all! However, in assembling current information for this paper I would like to offer special thanks to my colleagues, Helio Kuramoto, Sueli Maffia and Gabriel Mathias. I would also like to thank my husband, Richard Southwick, for his editorial contribution.

 

REFERENCES

ARROW, K. The economic implication of learning by doing. Review of Economic Studies, v. 29, p. 166-170, 1962.         [ Links ]

SOUTHWICK, S. B.; SOUTHWICK, R. Learning digital library technology across borders. In: JOINT CONFERENCE ON DIGITAL LIBRARIES, 2003, Texas. Papers... Texas: [s.n.], 2003.        [ Links ]

 

 

1 See http://www.soros.org/openaccess for the Budapest Open Access Initiative definition.
2 See http://www.openarchives.org
3 See http://bdtd.ibict.br
4 Electronic thesis and dissertation metadata standard (etd-ms), created by the NDLTD initiative (see http://www.ndltd.org)
5 See http://bdtd.ibict.br
6 See http://lattes.cnpq.br/index.htm
7 See http://www.dublincore.org
8 See http://scholar.lib.vt.edu/ETD-db/
9 See http://www.openarchives.org
10http://www.ndltd.org
11http://archives.eprints.org/ ?country=&version=&type=theses&order=recordcount&submit=Filter

 

 

APPENDIX

 

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